For the first 4 years of owing this van, it was a great machine. Some minor problems occurred, but mostly I only made regular visits for oil change and yearly service to my mechanic.
So far I have had so many problems in the last year that I can barely remember everything. It has been a nightmare. I can remember off the top of my head that several hoses have blown. The timing belt and chain have gone out. There has been a revving issue, which ended up being a small part that control fuel flow. The linkage on the transmission blew apart...literally. Two different fan systems have gone out. The interior heating system went bad. The axle boots have torn on both front wheels, one causing need to replace other parts. The exhaust system has gone bad twice. Had to replace the oxygen sensor and catalytic converter. There have been a couple of electrical issues that defy a fix. The head gasket went out and required a big expense.
There are many I am forgetting. Literally, I have put at least $4000 dollars into the old bird in the last year or so. I has been painful. most recently I had a furl issue. Neither my mechanic nor the Armstrong VW dealer could find a solution. Also, at the dealer my van was broken into and $3000 worth of backpacking gear and other items were stolen. My mechanic always parked my van inside when kept over the weekend, but Armstrong left it on the open lot where it was completely pillaged. Now they will not cover my damages. Since taking it to the dealer it has driven even worse and now sits in my driveway unable to start. Any wouldn't you know it I just made my final payment on it.
This van has served me so well on long road trips. I basically live out of the van during the summers for surfing up and down the Oregon coast and into California. I have taken it to the mountain many times and it performs well in the snow with front wheel drive and ABS.
The downfalls are that the ride is quite loud on the freeway. There are lots of sqeaky nosies that canoot be fixed, but you learn to love those little things after a while.
I just wish my van would run another 100,000 miles with few problems now that so many things have been replaced!